Review: Girl Against the Universe

Girl Against the Universe Girl Against the Universe by Paula Stokes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Some books hit you right in the feels and this book did more then that. It felt real in it's portrayal of mental illness and the slow baby steps it takes in therapy and the way Paula Stokes showed how therapy really works was something I applauded. I think this was the best portrayal of how real therapy works I've ever read.

Maguire was a wonderful heroine who trials tugged at my heartstrings. Each step she took you were cheering for her,every challenge she conquered you felt proud for her. All the people she meets along the way shine in their own way from her friends Jade and Penn to our hero Jordy who has his own fears to overcome.

The beauty of the romance between Jordy and Maguire is that it felt natural and not force. Neither one was the crutch for the other, they both helped each other and letting the other stand on their own two feet standing by their side.

The even pace was never hinder by over the top drama or any pity party on Maguire mental illness. It was just matter of fact and her journey. The trouble I did have was the ending felt a little to down pat, while it wrapped everything up nicely I just wish it may have went a different direction.

Still, I hold this book close to my heart for those of us who are still on our journey...

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Review: A Court of Mist and Fury

A Court of Mist and Fury A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Quick Thoughts:
While parts were ten times better then ACOTAR some parts I didn't truly care for. The first half tended to drag and I felt some characters were OOC. The shining glory was of course the new characters with the introduction of the Night Court and the show of friendship and family.



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Review: The Secrets of Solace

The Secrets of Solace The Secrets of Solace by Jaleigh Johnson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Being a huge fan of The Mark of the Dragonfly the debut of Jaleigh Johnson, I could not wait to journey back the the world she built in the first book. Johnson builds the world even more with The Secrets of Solace and while I really missed the crew of the 401, I enjoyed expanding the world with a few more mysteries and and everyone stuck in the middle of war.

Lina Winterbock a apprentice to the archivists, those who study the objects and animals that come from the meteors that land upon Solace. Lina finds searching her home in the stronghold of the mountains more interesting, now that her mentor is tied up in helping refugees from the war torn lands as the Iron War ravages the lands. Everyday is lonely until Lina stumbles upon a long buried object that seems to feel and Ozben that carries a heavy secret, both push Lina's life in a different direction that will change their world.

The Secrets of Solace felt like it was divided into two. The first half had it's slow turns and fast pulls, with the second half taking off like a rocket with page turning speeds in order to keep up. The first part I felt could been wrapped up with less of Lina inner monologue and perhaps more of Ozben of Lina interactions with Merlin the ship.

Now that this wasn't wasted by no means. It gave us a deeper understanding of our two leads in Lina who's hiding from the pain from of losing her parents and later her only anchor pushing her away for unknown reasons. Ozben out pain of being told he was just an extra being forces him to always trying to prove himself. These two build a strong friendship as they come together because of their loneliness this emotion always helps them with the thinking and feeling ship Merlin as they try to get it out of his cave-in prison.
We're introduced to even more mysteries through Merlin as we're shown that those at war is only a truly small part of the world with alot beyond the mountains.

The second part of the book shines as your tossed into one action packed scene to another, with alot of revelations that shuns and pulls at one's heartstrings.

The beauty of the story was sometimes we need someone to lean on and help us understand the world, to teach us that there is more then "me" and see others and understand the consequences of the not knowing or understanding before acting. Lina and Ozben open up instead of hiding within themselves. When they took the chance, it helped others open up as well.

While it had it had it's up in downs, I still really enjoyed The Secrets of Solace and can't wait to see more of the world and uncover the mysteries of Solace.


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Review: How to Be a Victorian: A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide to Victorian Life

How to Be a Victorian: A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide to Victorian Life How to Be a Victorian: A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide to Victorian Life by Ruth Goodman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Fascinated by the Victorian era for many years now, I gobbled up piece by piece of this book. Ruth Goodman makes everything fun and interesting as she herself is not only a historian but reenacts things she has read and research herself from corset wearing, farming and everyday life of, in this case, a Victorian.
Goodman sets up the book from morning to night from having breakfast to being tucked into bed at night. Somethings she spent a lot of time on, which at times could be bad or good depending on the subject at hand, but no doubt of the historical aspect and papers that have survived to this day.
I do wish some subjects she spent a little bit more time on like the leisure then again that maybe a whole book on it's own.

I adore history because it tends to stay around no matter how those who write it want to change it. I was surprised at some of the treatments Victorians went through mostly the poor kids who am surprised made it to adulthood!

For those who love history or lovers of the Victorian age and want to really see how they lived, I think will really enjoy this book and all it's historical and fun goodness!

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Review: Discovering Daisy

Discovering Daisy Discovering Daisy by Betty Neels
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Poor Daisy has had a rough road of late, when her puppy love beau turns out to be a asshat, falling into one of Holland's canals and getting mugged wasn't bad enough, worse it seems when she's at her lowest Mr. Jules der Huizma seems to always there to give her hand. She knows not to let this kind stranger near her heart, she's already been burnt and he's off limits being engaged. Only she didn't count on him falling in love with her.

This was one of the sweetest Betty Neels books I've read so far. Of course some of the troubles Daisy gets herself into as we're reminded of her being a “sensible person” seems a tad overkill. Only this makes her not so perfect and a reliable and determined human being in the end.
Daisy works at her father's antiques shop , so there's a gentle lull as the days go by Daisy tries to wrap her head around Jules and his motives and actions toward her.

Jules like Daisy slowly fall in love with the other, but with locations and Jules being engaged , it seems at times there love has no where to go. This I found the weakest part of the book. Jules being an honorable man feels like it has to be the woman to break the engagement. Knowing both don't love the other, I think he would have just gone on and married if something didn't come up for him to be able to break the engagement off.

Overall this was a small hindrance as Daisy and Jules relationship blossoms, it was very sweet how their able to get to know one another, and the proposal was the best part and left one with a happy smile on their face.

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Review: These Vicious Masks

These Vicious Masks These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


It took me a bit to get over the last heartbreaking pages. Thankfully, there is no cliffhanger( your will emotions appreciate it) as your thrown into a fascinating world that you could only read in the comics with a historical twist.
When Evelyn sister Rose disappears, she leaves everything behind to search for her, with the help of Mr.Kent and the odd Sebastian Braddock with his fantastic tales of super-humans, and to top it off claims the sisters also have special gifts also. Everlyn dismisses this as crazy, only to be shown it's all true.
I adored Everlyn, with her humor and snarkness, she had a spine of steel and wouldn't give up in the face of alot of heartbreak, she's still fighting. Although I loved Everlyn, I didn't care for the supposed "love triangle" something that's a big turn off for me, but there again, this was more of adventure book, so even the romance was pretty thin of the ground.
I loved every bit of the book, with it's chase scenes, balls and people with amazing powers, I look forward to more from this series.

ARC courtesy of Netgalley

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Review: A Betty Neels Christmas

A Betty Neels Christmas A Betty Neels Christmas by Betty Neels
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Simple and sweet, I can understand how Betty Neels can be a turn-off for some readers and beloved by others. Her stories can be a tad formulaic but there's something sorta simple and easy going in her works.

A Christmas Proposal 4 Stars: is a classic Cinderella story with the evil step-mother and beautiful evil step-sister pushing around the somewhat plain Cinderella - Bertha whom happens to be very kind-hearted but gets stepped on by her step-mother and sister. Then at a party she meets her Prince Dr. Oliver Hay-Smythe, who sees what's going on,and helps out as much as he can, but doesn't see himself falling in love with Bertha- his Cinderella.

Super cute, and very sweet, the drama came from the evil step-family getting in the way of love, but everyone knows nothing can stand in the way of LOVE! I would have liked for the step-mother and step-sister to have had a nice comeuppance but them losing in the end was the best revenge.


Winter Wedding 3.5 Stars: This felt and read like those classic romances, one where you hated the hero who you never know what is floating through their head, and plays it cool and hot one moment. Thrown into the mix is Emily who has alot of balance on her plate from her job a nurse, to taking care of her sister's twins and a very spoiled sister. I would have liked a tad more groveling from Professor Renier Jurres-Romeijn after the run around, but I cheered for Emily to find the love she deserved and Renier did have a good turn around in the end and one can see how much he loves Emily.

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